Sharon back as X Factor returns

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This Saturday sees ITV’s early evening schedule undergoing a change. This is mainly due to the return of the X Factor at 8pm.

This year there will be two main editions of this highly successful show – one on Saturday evening and one on Sunday night. The Sunday edition this week is fortunate in that a double episode of Coronation Street is scheduled just before it.

However for the first edition of this year’s X Factor, there is a new entertainment series before Sharon Osbourne’s return to the judging panel.

The X Factor’s great rival in recent years has been Strictly Come Dancing. That show has celebrities teaming up with professional dancers to learn a new routine each week.

Stepping Out is somewhat different, in that the dancing couples are real life partners. There are six couples in all, with for me the most famous being Glynis Barber and Michael Brandon – stars of the classic action series Dempsey and Makepeace. It will be the same six couples each week who will have to learn a new kind of dance.

As well as seeing how well the couples perform as dancers, we will no doubt learn more about their private lives as well as they prepare for each week’s show.

This programme will be hosted by the very enthusiastic Davina McCall. I notice that as That Puppet Game Show has been moved earlier in the evening it means that this show is up against Pointless Celebrities.

Which one will end up getting the bigger ratings? While ITV seems to have a lot of faith in this new show as it has been given a 90 minute running time, it will only last for five weeks unlike the X Factor which should be on until December!

Ian K.